On February 8, 2023, the International Association for the Defense of Religious Liberty (AIDLR) posthumously awarded the "Jean Nussbaum & Eleanor Roosevelt Award" to His Excellency Dr. Jorge Sampaio, in recognition of his action in defense and promotion of freedom, pluralism of opinion and diversity of thought, human rights and equal opportunities, peace and dialogue between cultures and civilizations.
Jorge Sampaio was President of the Republic of Portugal and during his term of office he signed the Law on Religious Freedom in 2001. In his years of work at the UN he launched the Alliance of Civilisations project.
The award ceremony took place at the O'Madeirense restaurant in Lisbon, Portugal, and it was H.E. Dr. Jorge Sampaio's daughter, Ms. Vera Sampaio, who accepted this recognition on behalf of her father.
The award was presented to Ms. Vera SAMPAIO by Dr. Ibrahim SALAMA, Head of the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights and who was Ambassador of Egypt to Portugal. Other speakers at the award ceremony included Dr. Fernando SOARES LOJA, Vice-President of the Portuguese Commission of FORB and Mr. Paulo MACEDO, Secretary-General of AIDLR.
Jorge Sampaio was described during the ceremony as a humble and wise man and, above all, a man of liberty who, being a layman, always worked in favor of freedom of religion or belief for everybody in Portugal.
Among the attendees were members of the Interreligious Dialogue Work Group of Portugal, Counselor Jose SOUSA BRITO, Counselor Constitutional Court, H.E. Mr. Adama Dieng, President of the Honorary Committee of the AIDLR, Members of the High Commission for Migration of the Government of Portugal and numerous academics of international origin and recognition.
The AIDLR thanks the family of Jorge Sampaio, represented by Ms. Vera Sampaio for their generosity and kindness in accepting this recognition and for personally attending to its reception.